Senator Stewart-Cousins got to see the green results - the new green roof on St. John's Riverside Hospital in Yonkers on Wednesday, September 10th. 24,000 square feet or 70% of the asphalt roof was removed and replaced with green, grassy plants. The plants capture and recycle the rainwater, removing it from the stormwater runoff that would end up in the Hudson River below. And the green roof also helps the hospital improve its energy-efficiency in terms of heating and cooling needs. A nearly million dollar state grant, through the Regional Economic Development Council and the State's Environmental Facilities Corporation, made the project possible.
Here is a partial listing of bills I have supported this session to aid New York’s former servicemen and servicewomen. These initiatives will now go to Governor Cuomo for final action.
-- Legislation I co-sponsored was passed by both houses (S.7839, first introduced as S.4714)) to extend the Military Service Credit Law of 2000 to all veterans who have served in the military. Right now, public employees who served in the armed forces may purchase up to three years of pension credit only if their military service occurred during specified conflicts. This measure will expand this opportunity to public employee veterans who also served their country in peacetime.
With consumers being forced to spend more and more to heat their homes with home heating fuel oil, Senator Jack M. Martins (R-Mineola) today introduced legislation creating new protections for home heating fuel oil customers. The legislation would create a statewide consumer complaint hotline and require home heating oil companies to inform their customers about cost-saving steps that can help them lower their bills.
ALBANY – Sen. Joseph A. Griffo called on the federal government to help New York fix its aging infrastructure after years of underfunding and this past winter’s extreme conditions.
“The Times-Union recently declared this ‘the worst winter in years for potholes and general road decay’ – and I couldn’t agree more,” said Griffo, R-Rome. “It’s simple ‘frozenomics.’ Local governments maintain roads that sustain more than 63 billion miles of travel. Governments at all levels have underfunded the upkeep of those roads. Now motorists are paying for it.”
Senator Simcha Felder (D-Brooklyn) is pleased to announce that HEAP and HeartShare applications are now available at his office for those who meet income guidelines.
“Sadly, so many New Yorkers have trouble paying the high heating costs during the winter months,” said Senator Felder. “Each year, there are tragic stories of home fires and deaths as a result of people using candles or stoves as a substitute for heat. These tragedies can be avoided thanks to programs like HEAP and HeartShare, and I encourage anyone who needs help to call my office.”
Households across the state can begin applying for heating assistance this winter through New York’s Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) on Monday, November 18. HEAP, which is overseen by the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA), is a federally-funded program that provides up to $650 for eligible households to pay for energy costs in order to keep their homes warm during the winter.
Senator Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr. (R-Merrick) is informing residents that New York’s Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) will begin accepting applications on Monday, November 18th. HEAP, which is overseen by the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA), is a federally-funded program that provides up to $650 for eligible households to pay for energy costs in order to keep their homes warm during the winter.
For the first time, Long Islanders will be able to submit applications for regular HEAP benefits online at myBenefits.ny.gov starting on November 18th.
State Senator Patty Ritchie presented an official Senate Resolution to the Sandy Creek Central School District this week, congratulating the district on being named being named one of the top five “Energy STAR” schools in Central New York.
The Sandy Creek Central School District was named an “Energy STAR” school for improving its energy performance, managing energy strategically across the district and making cost-effective, energy-saving improvements.
In An Effort To Keep The Community And Citizens Better Informed About The Business Being Undertaken By Their Elected State Government, Senator Gallivan Will Publish Important Legislative Votes Following Each Week’s Legislative Session
Measures Increase Commercial Fuel Tax Exemption and Provide Low-Interest Loans to Dairy Farms for Energy-Efficient TechnologiesThe New York State Senate passed two bills that would help businesses save money by increasing commercial tax exemptions for heating fuel and helping dairy farms invest in energy-efficient technology. The measures would reduce the cost of doing business in New York State to help spur economic growth in agriculture and other key industries.
The New York State Senate today passed two bills that would help businesses save money by increasing commercial tax exemptions for heating fuel and helping dairy farms invest in energy-efficient technology.
BUDGET PLAN WOULD CHANGE THE STATE’S FILM PRODUCTION TAX CREDIT TO LEVEL PLAYING FIELD FOR WNY
The New York State Senate today approved a 2013-14 budget resolution, proposed by the Senate Majority Coalition, that focuses on helping businesses create new jobs, investing additional funds in education and transportation, providing mandate relief to local governments, and restoring proposed cuts to women’s health programs as well programs for the developmentally disabled. The budget also includes proposals to implement a two-percent state spending cap and reform the State’s film production tax credit program to level the playing field for Upstate.
The NYS Department of Financial Services (DFS) is setting new rules to speed the processing of insurance claims in areas affected by Storm Sandy. The new regulation reduces the amount of time an insurer can delay its decision on a claim, and requires insurers to report to the Department on how many claims it is delaying and the reasons for the delays.
Senator Patrick M. Gallivan (R,C,I – Elma) joined with fellow members of the Senate Republican Conference and leaders of statewide business organizations to urge Governor Cuomo to remove the proposed extension of the utility tax surcharge from his Executive Budget. The 18-a surcharge, which has increased utility bills for every ratepayer in the state, is scheduled to expire on March 31, 2014.
“Extending this surcharge will cost ratepayers almost $3 billion. Small businesses, working families and seniors, all struggling to keep up with high energy costs, cannot afford this burdensome utility tax any longer,” said Senator Gallivan. “Allowing the 18-a assessment surcharge to expire will also help to create jobs and make New York more economically competitive.”
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo unveiled the proposed 2013-14Executive Budget and Management Plan that builds on two years of balanced, fiscally responsible budgeting and invests in economic development, education reform, rebuilding after Superstorm Sandy, provides support to local governments and school districts, and includes no new taxes or fees.
Highlights of the Executive Budget:
· Eliminates $1.3 billion budget gap with no new taxes or fees. The expected gap for 2013-14 was projected to be $17.4 billion prior to the last two responsible budgets.
· Holds spending increases below 2 percent for third consecutive year.
The NYS Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) announced that beginning January 2, eligible low-income New Yorkers who are in danger of having their heat shut off or running out of fuel, can apply for emergency Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) benefits.
HEAP, overseen by OTDA, is a federally-funded program to help eligible households in meeting their home energy needs. Eligible households can receive one regular HEAP benefit per season, but may also be eligible for a one-time emergency HEAP benefit if they are in danger of running out of fuel or having their heat or heat-related utility service shut off.